I landed on home soil early this morning -
made that direct red eye from
and slept the entire three hours of the trip. Then when I was heading to the
subway with blurry eyes and too much to carry, I found a shy, lost woman. Her
name is Amanda.
She decided to come to
after a professor put her onto Jonathan Kozol books about education and brown
kids. She’s a white woman with a bachelor’s looking for work with kids in
impoverished communities – she’s never taught before but she wants to see if it
could work for her. Since graduating from college in 2003 she has tried a few
careers but nothing reaches her. So here she is, scared she might fail,
but certain that her passion could better be met by service in the South Bronx,
or maybe India, or New Orleans even, than Colorado.
While one part of me wanted to react with haughty righteousness to her ‘helper’
approach, the other part of me was moved. A virginal whiteous
visitor…normally I would say go start the work at home, but she was already
here, in NY, with one suitcase and a week to find experiences and change her
life. She was so genuine and despite her quiet fragility, she was doing
something so brave, such a huge leap that she hadn’t even told her
family. I think if I hadn’t run across her she might have just taken a
subway to the Bronx and started walking around…I put her in touch with some
folks who I know have taught in the
and then some teachers organizations I know of.
Yes, for both of us it was a show of naivity – several times she said maybe it
was stupid, or a mistake, and I thought to myself what do you expect you can
do. It made me think again of relativism, what is it that makes someone wake up
from a life of class-based inattention and navigate the rush of guilt and
wanting to make up for time lost, how quickly can one come to an on point
analysis of justice after that? Its not my job, never has been, but
occasionally, you have to let your heart be moved.
She looks like I imagine my aunt might have 30 years ago, on her first trip
away from home, I took pictures to send her. I mean…look at her:
I slept much of the day, intermittently trying to delete a shit ton of emails
that have piled up. Although it might be bitchy I kind of want to change my
message on my phone to say – just text message me! Its easier on the sidekick
to get a text or email or instant message than check voicemail. Perfect for
No hair on me today! Sadly, a travel rash all over. This happens sometimes for me
with a quick weather shift. A slight feeling all over that my skin is still in
the snow in
aka reason number 12 I need to move to an island. Of course, with the rash and
chin hair this might all secretly be a top 10 list of ways Adrienne unmackifies…or
this is the new sexy! Stratch and shave…remarkably I still smell fantastic!
Watched some science fiction and now have the Constant Gardner in with The Beat
My Heart Skipped still to come. My mama’s in town, tomorrow I get to see her!
Now – the thing I sent and posted all over today:
words from Hopi Nation Elders Oraibi,
ArizonaWe have been telling the people that this is the Eleventh Hour
Now you must go back and tell the people that this is the Hour
And there are things to be considered.
Where are you living?
What are you doing?
What are your relationships?
Are you in the right relation?
Where is your water?
Know your garden.
It is time to speak your truth
Create your community.
Be good to each other.
And do not look outside yourself for the leader.
This could be a good time!
There is a river flowing now very fast
It is so great and swift that there are those who will be afraid.
They will try to hold onto the shore.
They will feel they are being torn apart and they will suffer greatly.
Know the river has its destination.
The elders say we must let go of the shore, and push off and into the
Keep our eyes open, and our head above the water.
See who is in there with you and Celebrate.
At this time in history, we are to take nothing personally.
Least of all ourselves.
For the moment that we do,
Our spiritual growth and journey comes to a halt.
The time of the lone wolf is over, Gather yourselves!
Banish the word struggle from your attitude and your vocabulary.
All that you do now must be done in a sacred manner
And in celebration.
"We are the ones we’ve been waiting for…"